LA: How has attending conference(s) assisted in your writing career?

JO: The conferences have built confidence as I learn more craft each year and interact with writers in all genres.  I have been lucky to learn from high quality faculty who are generous with their mentoring efforts.

LA:  If not previously published, are you now published?

JO:  I was not published before I attended the first conference. I am now published. My short story, The Stud Table was published in 2014 in The Birmingham Arts Journal,  Volume 11, and Issue 3. This issue of BAJ is devoted to the winners of the First Annual Electra Awards sponsored by Alabama Power Company. In an effort to support the Arts in Alabama, Alabama Power has provided generous cash prizes. I did not win the big bucks but was provided a Publication Award in BAJ.